When we talk about #smalltownlove these days we are almost always sharing an experience we've just had. It almost always is the kind of story that leaves us with goosebumps.
Well... for those of you in need of a little feel-good-love, this one's for you.
A few weeks ago we had the honor of hosting Kani & Richalde. These two (now newlyweds) are an amazing couple who weathered the heartbreak of losing their original wedding plans for a destination wedding in Key West, to the wrath of Hurricaine Irma last year. They took that opportunity to create a new plan for their dream day, and they chose Mercantile Hall. With a new script, new decor, and friends and family in tow, they hit Burlington to celebrate. The #smalltownlove came in to play as the groomsmen enjoyed themselves outside waiting for the ceremony to begin. They wandered across the street to a Burlington business that is near and dear to our hearts - Itzin's Shoes - where they were introduced to Tiffany Cramer & Dave Schmafeldt. They took a seat on Itzin's brand new community bench out in front of their shoe store, and Dave quickly came out to shine their shoes. The guys all lined up, feeling the love from Tiffany & Dave right on the spot. Watching this unfold you couldn't help but observe the fabulous service that was taking place while the air was filled with laughter. And that, my friends, is Exhibit A for this week of small town, downtown love. Small random acts of kindness for those visiting Burlington for the first time. If we only had a camera...it was authentic, spontaneous, and beautiful.
Fast forward to Sunday, July 1st. Our first (of hopefully many) community give-back events where we hosted a super fun Food Truck Festival. Graciously, Chase Bank allowed us the use of their parking lot behind Mercantile Hall, so we packed it full of scrumptious food options. 10 to be exact, all different cuisines, and so much yumminess to try. When we saw the first trucks (Yuppie Hill & Wilson Meats) arrive, we got excited. But when that 10th truck rolled in, we knew we had ourselves a big, awesome festival. Right from the start of the event at 3pm, we watched the people stream in, all smiles (which to us translated to 'who cares about a little rain?') to hang out & celebrate community. We opened up Mercantile Hall, provided a kickin' live band (they were awesome - AARPers Bizarre was their name), and served up a full bar & some tasty craft beers from Third Space, Central Waters, Bells, New Glarus, and Lakefront Brewery. We filled the seats, watched some dance, and most importantly, met a lot of new friends. THAT is what small town, downtown love is all about and gosh we're feeling lucky to live here. (...goosebumps...)
Thank you to those who helped Mercantile Hall bring the Trucks & Taps Food Truck Festival to Burlington:
Cupcake-A-Rhee, Matty's, Gypsy Soul, Blue Cow Creperie, Double B's BBQ, Yuppie Hill Farm, Wilson Meats, Sushi Go, Hardwood Cafe, Tropical Chill, Chase Bank, Mike, Laura, Abby & Kayla from Drink Inc., Elite Rentals, & AARPers Bizarre. And of course to Ashlee Herriges, Stephanie Heft, Abbey Robers, Chris Carlock, and our ever patient hubbies & kiddos - may we always be blessed with sharing moments like these.